Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The End Of The School Year . . .

The end of the “school” year is upon us . . . and I’m feeling my usual guilt that we didn’t “do” enough.  I’m not feeling it as much with Rosie Girl because she works independently, but I definitely feel it with Wild Man.  What if he hasn’t learned enough?  What if he becomes a bum?  Worse, what if he can’t ever get a job and wants to live at home the rest of his life???  What if???

And then I’m reminded that most of our educational goals for our kids are not academic.  What do we want our kids to get from being homeschooled?

1. A strong grounding in the Christian faith and (hopefully) making their faith their own.

2. An appropriate self-image – confident enough to take risks and handle failure, but not overly confident and unable to handle the tough situations in life.

3. Good work ethic – they need to be willing to work, yet not get their self-worth from work.

4. Ability to communicate well and work with others – they need to respect others and be able to manage conflict by addressing it and not hiding from it.

5. Initiative to do what needs to be done.

6. Money management


Of all of those goals, only money management is particularly academic.  We do plan that our kids will have a high school education that will be academically strong enough to make them attractive to colleges.  But, whether they choose college or some other vocational track is between them and God.  (I’m sure we’ll give an opinion!)


I was reminded today of how much my kids learn even when we aren’t doing the academics the way that I’d like.  Wild Man did his laundry today without being asked.  Several years ago, I taught the kids to do their own laundry so that I could not worry about it when I had long migraines.  Rosie Girl has been good about doing hers without any prompting, but, until today, Wild Man often needed reminders.  The kids are splitting the lawn mowing tasks here at home and next door at Grandma’s (who is only going to have that house until early fall, but is paying the kids to mow the lawn this summer).  Rosie Girl also has a lawn mowing job with a neighbor and, it appears, will be teaching some piano lessons.


My kids aren’t perfect.  But, I’m pleased with their growth and development.  It’s really not of crucial importance that they can name the halogens or noble gases if they’re not going to be chemists.  It is crucial that they are willing to work, can be persistent with a project, can take the initiative (like Wild Man’s doing his own laundry), and can manage their money.


So, I’m not feeling so bad about my kids’ educations.  I just have to remind myself that learning to do laundry and cook dinner (which Wild Man did last night with PWM’s help and is doing tomorrow with my help) are at least as important as being able to name all the countries in Africa.


Sometime in the next few months I need to plan curriculum for next year.  I’m not sure when I’m going to get around to that because all my energy right now is focused on the yarn shop.  I figure that Wild Man and Rosie Girl will end up with some kind of “Entrepreneurship” credit on their transcripts – because they’re definitely going to be helping out with this venture!


P.S. The pictures don’t actually have anything to do with the post.  I figured since I like seeing pictures of the kids, then you would too!!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Lagniappe 5/25/2011

Just an update on what is going on in our little family.

  • Wild Man got Rock Band Beatles for Wii for his birthday and it has become one of his favorite games.
  • Rosie Girl is making bracelets with flags on them based on one of the anime shows that she watches.  She’s probably going to sell them on Etsy – I’ll post a link if she does.
  • Wild Man is doing lots of practice on his drum set and he’s becoming pretty good.
  • Wild Man has also been practicing bass guitar.
  • After a visit with the accountant today, we’ve made some decisions about the yarn shop that mean that we may be able to get started without a bank loan.  Yippee!!
  • The Weyauwega Fiber Arts Circle afternoons and evenings have been going great!  We had six women at the Circle this afternoon and three last week on Thursday afternoon.
  • The elementary school knitting club is finished, but we’re going to be doing a knitting/crochet club at the library over the summer.
  • I’m working diligently on my Fair Isle sweater, but it’s slow going.  Items for the County Fair have to be finished by July 26th, so I have to keep moving.
  • PWM is knitting a hat and I’m learning crochet.
  • Next week is stage rehearsal and dress rehearsal for Rosie Girl’s tap class.  It’s always a busy week, but worth it!

OK, that’s it.  Nothing deep today.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Things I Will Never Understand

Technically, I should title this “Things I Will Never Understand Until I Get To Heaven”, but that is a little too long and tedious.  But, here at 2:17am while I’m having some impressive insomnia, I’ll list some things that I’ve realized I’ll never understand.

  1. Why Sophie (Rosie Girl’s cat) steals socks.  She certainly doesn’t wear them!
  2. The Boson-Higgs particle
  3. Why Sassy (the long-haired cat) thinks it’s such a victory that she conquered a hair elastic.
  4. Why PWM loves me
  5. Why Silver (the short-haired grey cat) believes that the laundry basket of clean clothes needs to be her bed.
  6. Why Sophie and Sassy are addicted to packing tape.
  7. Why I can’t sleep tonight.
  8. “The physics of the thing!”  (Sorry, Dad, I’m still a physics novice!)
  9. Wild Man’s love of all things gun-like.
  10. Anime and Manga (sorry, Rosie Girl)
  11. Why I have migraines (although I’m pretty sure I didn’t cause them)
  12. Twitter
  13. IPhones (I guess I’m not as tech-savvy as I thought)
  14. Why I don’t like fruit (and many veggies)
  15. The grace of God.

Do you have any to add?  Isn’t insomnia great?  I get all kinds of crazy things coming from my head when I don’t sleep!

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Our Weekend, Including Mother’s Day

I’ve had better weekends.  The plan was for me to make Wild Man’s birthday cake on Friday so he could have his party on Saturday with his friends sleeping over, and then go to church on Sunday (Mother’s Day) where PWM, Rosie Girl, and Wild Man would all be playing during the worship music time.  So, did it happen like this?  Kind of.

On Friday, PWM was feeling awful with cold symptoms and a sore throat.  I was inclined to think it was just a cold until he developed a fever.  Since he was sick, I did the shopping for Wild Man’s party and then came home and made dinner and made Wild Man’s cake.  He didn’t want a lot of decorations on it, so I thought I’d just do a little writing on it Saturday morning.

PWM had an 8am appointment at the clinic where he was diagnosed with strep and given meds.  Yippee!!  (Not “yippee” that he had strep, but “yippee” that he could take meds for it instead of just having to wait it out.)  I woke up at about 8:30 with a migraine.  No big deal, I figured I’d take my meds and stay upstairs when the boys were inside and being loud.  Unfortunately, by 11am, I was vomiting and thought my head might explode.  So, my dear hubby took me off to the Emergency Room for treatment.

While we were there, he texted Rosie Girl that she was to be “in charge” when Wild Man’s friends got there.  The boys started arriving at 1pm, but PWM and I didn’t leave the Emergency Department until 2pm.  The ER staff was very helpful.  The doctor who saw me is one whom I’ve seen before (and I think he started there before I quit working).  He commented that I hadn’t been to the ER in “a coon’s age” – which is, thankfully, true.  My last couple of bad migraines that required intervention were during clinic hours and I could get meds there.  In any case, it took a lot of meds and fluids to get things calmed down.

We got home to find five adolescent boys running around playing.  And they were ready for cake!  So, we had presents and cake and ice cream before I went upstairs.  I slept for about 4 hours and then spent most of the rest of the afternoon/evening upstairs with one of the cats (who did NOT like having strangers around).

The boys were in their sleeping bags by 11, although I don’t think they were asleep quite that soon.  I didn’t get  up this morning till 10:30, but I know that everyone had to be at church at 7am, so Wild Man, all his friends, Rosie Girl, and PWM were out the door by 6:30am.

Since I got up so late, I’m missing the Mother’s Day festivities at church.  But, really, I’m just glad the migraine is better.  I haven’t had one that bad in quite a while.  And, I have to say that Wild Man has some good friends.  They prayed before they ate dinner (without having a parent tell them to), their arguments and fussing were minimal, and they were all very respectful to me and PWM. 

I think we’re going to have a quiet day  at home today.  We might take a walk later.  Otherwise, we’re going to have Chinese take-out, hang out together, and watch the finale of The Amazing Race.

So, how has your Mother’s Day been?  Anything exciting planned?

Saturday, May 07, 2011

7 Quick Takes Friday–The “I Can’t Believe I Have 2 Teenagers” Edition


1. I am now on the sixth day of being the mother of two teenagers.  I don’t think we can afford it.  Wild Man has taken to eating like a Hobbit, although he’s got more height and less foot hair than a hobbit.  He would eat breakfast, second breakfast, elevensies, luncheon, afternoon tea, supper, dinner, and dessert if he could!

2. God is laughing at me.  As I teenager and young adult, I would say that I didn’t want to marry an engineer or a pastor and I wanted to be employed, not run my own business (or practice).  My husband has a degree in electrical engineering and is an elder.  And we’re going to open a yarn store.  This was definitely not in the plan I had for my life.  (Of course, neither were debilitating headaches.)  But, God is in control of everything, so I’m just going to sit back and enjoy the ride.  And laugh right along with Him!

3. I finished a really fun pair of socks for myself this week.  I need to block them before I wear them.  However, I’m thinking about entering them in the County Fair, so I might not wear them until Fall.  Which wouldn’t be too bad since they’re wool.

4. On Sunday morning, the other three members of the family are all going to be playing music for worship.  PWM plays bass guitar almost every week with the worship team.  Rosie Girl is joining them on keyboards this week since the person originally scheduled had to cancel.  And, since it’s Mother’s Day, the teen band is going to play, with Wild Man on drums.

5. Tomorrow is Wild Man’s birthday party!!  We’re going to have five boys running around playing Nerf Dart War.  And eating.  I bought lots and lots of food!

6. The weather was sunny and 65 degrees today.  Is spring actually going to stick around this time??

7. I made Wild Man a yellow cake with chocolate icing for tomorrow.  It’s on a big cake stand, so I can’t put it in the cabinet.  I loosely covered it with aluminum foil, not because it will go bad, but because one of our crazy cats likes chocolate and I’m afraid she would decide to eat icing till she got sick.  So, the foil is to scare her off with the noise if she gets too close.

So, how has your week been?  Check out 7 Quick Takes Friday to see what others are up to!!

Wednesday, May 04, 2011


1. We had ten kids at knitting club yesterday – it was a blast!!  Of course, now I’m exhausted and sore from leaning over kids to help them knit.  Last week, we got the first nine casting on.  This week, we got those nine knitting.  We had another girl in the club and she learned to cast on and to knit all in one day.  I’m going to see if the kids are interested in continuing through the summer at the library.  I’m honestly having a lot more fun than I expected with this project.

2. I’m going to start on the rest of my Fair Isle sweater soon.  I was going to start last night until I realized that the socks I’m knitting are on one of the needles that I need.  Oops!

3. I’m working on a business plan and spreadsheet for our yarn shop venture.  Wow – I’m learning a ton!

4. We still have the Christmas lights inside the house and around the front door up.  I think we’ll try to get those taken care of in the next few days!

5. Wild Man turned 13 on Sunday.  He’s having a Nerf Darts party on Saturday.  I’m so not ready for this!

6. Along with turning 13, Wild Man’s appetite seems to be increasing.  Since breakfast this morning, he’s had lunch at the Senior Nutrition Site and then the equivalent of two more meals here at home.  I’m not sure if we’ll be afford to keep him!!

7. We finally got some sunshine today!!  Yippee!!  At the rate we were going, I was afraid we’d all be Vitamin D deficient in month or so.

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Our Week In Review–5/1/2011


So, I’m doing our Week In Review on Sunday night.  What does this say about our week?

We’ve just finished a very busy week and weekend.  I had a migraine last Monday through Wednesday and then again last night.  Nonetheless, the children appear to be getting educated.

Wild Man

History/Social Sciences – Wild Man has been watching some DVDs on Africa, although we’ve been reading about the Middle East.  Hopefully, he’s not too terribly confused!

Language Arts – Wild Man is reading King Of The Wind.  We made some real progress this week in spelling and I had him compose his own paragraph using some spelling words.  Overall, I’d like to see him doing some writing as well as starting on a typing program.  We didn’t do any work in his grammar book this week, but we’ll try to do some this week, along with some MadLibs.

Math – He’s continuing in ALEKS Math.  This week, he was working on factoring numbers along with trying to get his multiplication tables down pat.  I think we’ll be playing some Multiplication/Division 24 this week.

Science – I’m feeling pretty guilty that we haven’t gotten much Science done the last few weeks.  I’ll probably have him watch some science stuff on DVR or Netflix this week.  He keeps wanting to watch Mythbusters, but I think he’s seen all the Mythbusters episodes!

PE – Friday night was belt test night and Wild Man and PWM both passed their tests and will get green-tip belts!  The warmer weather means that Wild Man has also been out playing basketball whenever it’s not raining. 

Music – The 7th and 8th grade band is working on music for their Spring Concert.  Wild Man is still getting drum lessons and is practicing bass guitar and getting help from PWM as he needs it.

Life Skills – On Wednesday night, I wasn’t up to cooking, so I gave Wild Man instructions on making meatballs.  He also made spaghetti and spaghetti sauce to go with the meatballs.  Yummy!!


Rosie Girl

History/Social Sciences – Rosie Girl’s study of the church has gotten into the 20th century.   I hope she understands the various groups and denominations within the Christian Church better than I did when I was a teenager.

Language Arts – On Thursday night, Rosie Girl and I watched The Zefferelli production of “Romeo and Juliet” since that’s the play she’s studying right now.  Her copy has the original Shakespeare on the left side and updated language on the right side – she tells me that it’s quite helpful!  Next week, she’ll write about literature – either “Romeo and Juliet” or “Twelfth Night”.

Math – Rosie Girl is plodding on through Geometry.  Not much more to say about it.

Japanese – More plodding.

Chemistry – I’m very glad that PWM is helping Rosie Girl with Chemistry these days.  She’s making progress and will be doing experiments this week.

Dance – Rosie Girl had a make-up dance class on Friday night, which made her very, very happy!

Music – Yesterday, Rosie Girl played in the annual Piano Festival.  She’s pretty happy with how she did.  She will be playing on Sunday with the church’s worship team because the keyboard player had to cancel at the last minute.

Art – Rosie Girl is enjoying her art class.  For one of her projects, she did a drawing of the dance studio and gave it to the owner.


I still don’t have this week’s school schedules ready.  I guess I’ll get it done first thing in the morning.

Catching Up 5/1/2011

Just a list of what’s been going on around here!

1. Today Wild Man turns 13!!  I am the mother of two teenagers!!  Ack!

2. Since Wild Man is 13, he’s getting his own Facebook account.  Ack!!

3. PWM and I are feeling a little stalled on the yarn shop thing.  We are meeting with a friend who knows a lot about business stuff to pick his brain and sort out the next step.  I’ve been working on our business plan and have even learned some basic spreadsheet stuff.  So, despite feeling stalled, I guess we are progressing, albeit slowly.

4. I’ve got several hats and bags up at the coffee shop for sale.

5. I came up with a great idea for a purse, but it didn’t work out.  I wanted to have cables up the purse that extended into the handles.  Unfortunately, I chose a kind of cable that is not the same right side up and upside down so I can’t hook up the cables from one side to another.  Do I rip it out and start over?  Try to do another kind of handle so I don’t have to start all over?  Think about it tomorrow?

6. Wild Man and PWM both passed their Tae Kwon Do test for green tip belts!!

7. Rosie Girl played at Piano Festival yesterday and felt like she did pretty well.

8. I was up most of the night with a migraine, so I’m feeling like a wet dishrag at the moment.  I’ve got a lot of things bouncing around in my head, but it’s quite the mess up there, so I’ll write more when I’m a little more awake.

That’s all for the moment.